Wednesday, August 5, 1998

(minus 2 out of 5 stars)

Posted By on Wed, Aug 5, 1998 at 12:00 AM

Ordinarily when one refers to a tearjerker, one thinks of Ghost or Old Yeller or Terms of Endearment. But how to describe the downbeat, defeated feeling one has after an hour in the company of this film?

Forget all the whining about the coarsening of society. Forget all the hype about young gents Trey Parker and Matt Stone, who "are pushing the envelope" with "South Park" and were contracted by writer-director David Zucker to make their cinematic debut. The only thing that is being pushed is the plunger and the sound you hear is the future of American youth culture going down the drain.

We join our erstwhile geniuses as they make nuisances of themselves at a high school reunion bash. Think Romy and Michele as dweeby Nintendo masturbators. Challenged to a game of two-on-two by some odious jock studs, they improvise a new game they christen BASEketball.

Fast forward five years. The game's a hit and our "dudes" are stars. Stardom has its privileges which includes various chicks (including Jenny McCarthy and Yasmine Bleeth) with the finest plastic busts Beverly Hills can muster and a whole array of sycophants, bootlickers and lackeys. Stone and Parker are supposed to be hapless babes in the woods, at the mercy of professional sports and all its hypocrisy and symbolic bullshit. Will success ruin their friendship? Will they find true love? Will you want to find out?

The smart answer is no. One can only take so much surf speak run through with home-stylin' jive coming from the mouths of white suburban twits. If this is how the kids of America talk among themselves, perhaps we should close the schools and build more zoos. There's nary a plot point in sight and, for God's sake, where's the satire? The only people being given the shaft here are the customers who came out of morbid curiosity and stay (as long as endurance holds out) for the air conditioning. Absolute crap.

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